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I think I know why you like that picture.

March 11, 2012 4 comments

Dear Jaffner,

I think I know why you like this picture. It reminds you of the time you set the gutter on fire, doesn’t it? Big flames, satisfied smirk. Was the other weird sister was there, too? It was practically in her yard, at any rate.

Recently, you must have told my own kids about this one. They refuse to believe I didn’t participate in those pyrotechnics. They tell me, as if citing from a rule book, “Well, did you do anything to try to stop it?”

I admit it. I loved that felt beanie.

Or maybe the picture reminds you of our own experience in Girl Scouts. Until recently, I thought we were atypical. How many times did we even make it in the door after our moms dropped us off? On at least one occasion, I remember smoking cigarettes behind the building. I have a vague memory of blaming it on the ugly uniforms, which I suddenly hated after doting on those cute Brownie clothes. Our moms tried to keep us from quitting. Good luck with that.

Now I know that it was Girl Scouting itself that set us on this dark path of independent thinking. I’m sure it’s why our collective closets are packed full of gay and lesbian friends. We’re only fruit flies, after all.

Liberty and justice for all in the land of the free.

Which brings me back to my own boys, who on occasion over the years begged me to let them be Boy Scouts. Each time, I patiently explained to them why they couldn’t. In fact, I think this was probably the opener for their ongoing indoctrination into civil rights for homosexual people. Which, sadly, has now deteriorated into “Not that there’s anything wrong with that!” on cue.

We should’ve stuck with that Cub Scout pack we enjoyed so much. In hindsight, my mom probably knew the Boy Scouts wouldn’t let us play once we aged out of her backyard den, Or maybe she sensed that budding feminists, latent Communists like us would never fit in with the more military (would that be Fascist, then?) agenda of boys who had outgrown pine-cone crafts and pond fishing.

Probably a good thing. Those Boy Scout shorts would have made our butts look big.

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